Eric Pickles is fond of his attacks on town hall workers, standing in judgement of those public servants he regards as being in non-jobs. But before he denigrates those making a real difference in their communities, maybe Eric should think about the beam in his own eye.
Pickles’ glass-and-steel Department for Communities and Local Government employs no less than 2,100 staff, not one of which can be described as a front line role. Despite attacks on local government spin, Pickles himself keeps a whopping 43 press officers on the payroll, presumably to maintain the fiction in the right wing press that it is local government with too many non-jobs.
Other members of Pickles’ senior team include the Deputy Director for the Big Society, who adds value by “leading on the corporate secretariat and performance”. Meanwhile the Deputy Director for Knowledge Management is busy with the “provision of records management”, also known as, erm, filing. Overall, Pickles has 111 Directors and Deputy Directors, all on £65K+ and many of them earning far more than the PM.
Eric’s administrative budget alone is £262m, far greater than Manchester’s entire adult social care provision. And despite all their talk of cut-backs, the Ministers and their staff are still spending over 10 grand a month on vehicle hire from the much-bullied Government Limo Service.
If any out-of-work council staff are reading, there’s a vacancy for “Deputy Director of Marketing and Channels” , in charge of critical national matters like the CLG Twitter Feed.